‘Lack of Staffing’ causes 3-hour TSA lines at Destin-Fort Walton Beach airport

OKALOOSA COUNTY, Fla. (WKRG) — Airline passengers attempting to go away the Emerald Coast acquired caught in lengthy lines Thursday morning in Okaloosa County.

Flights throughout all 4 airways had been delayed at the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport and plenty of passengers waited in safety lines for 3 or extra hours.

VPS opened a brand new terminal this season for Allegiant flights. The new part of gates within the C concourse is an element of a multi-million greenback growth.

Many passengers Thursday morning balmed the growth for the delay. VPS employees mentioned the difficulty shouldn’t be with the brand new terminal or gates, however with an absence of staffing with TSA.

April Sarver, public info officer with Okaloosa County mentioned passengers have been calling all morning to report the issue. Sarver mentioned the VPS employees is all hand on deck to get folks via the lines.

After I spoke with airport management, what I discovered is that there’s a important TSA staffing problem as and I imagine it has began this morning. I haven’t heard something about it till right this moment, however it’s so important that they’re simply not in a position to get folks via these TSA lines easily or swiftly.

April Sarver, Okaloosa County

Both the overall and TSA Pre-check lines wrapped via the primary constructing Thursday morning. VPS employees created a second ready line to have room for the check-in counters.

Jacqueline Monnin waited for 3 hours on her technique to Seattle to see her grandson. Monnin mentioned as soon as they made it via safety, seating on the Delta flight turned a difficulty.

People are upset it took so lengthy to get via the lines. Others getting on are discovering individuals are of their seats as a result of some have been on the aircraft ready for over an hour for us in order that they sat by family members. What a multitude. Alot of annoyed folks. I’m simply grateful I’m sitting down on this aircraft and by 4:25 I might be showered in grandbaby kisses and hugs!

Jacqueline Monnin

VPS on-line suggests passengers arrive at least two hours earlier than the departure time. While employees works to get extra TSA employees on-site, passengers ought to arrive as early as they will.

Long lines had been additionally seen in 2021 on Saturday mornings, the holiday turnaround day. VPS employees mentioned the staffing problem began on Thursday and they don’t count on it to be a long-term drawback.

I do know that airport director Tracy Stage is working with TSA to attempt to discover a resolution. Of course, that’s not going to be a direct resolution, however they’re working to get it resolved as rapidly as potential with TSA. That new terminal is tiny. It doesn’t have something to do with the crowds which might be on the market right this moment.

April Sarver, Okaloosa County

To look at the departure flight record, click here.

To name the suggestion and complain line, dial (850) 609-4711.


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